GitHub releases Electron 1.0 for desktop app developers

Electron, GutHub's open source framework for cross-platform development of desktop applications, has reached 1.0 release status this week.

Spun off GitHub's Atom editor and previously known as Atom Shell, the framework lets developers build native applications using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. With Electron, JavaScript APIs handle the particulars of talking to different operating systems, while Web pages build user interfaces.

GitHub says an Electron app can be thought of as a minimal Web browser with the ability to interact with the local file system; the Web browser is part of the apps packaging. Thus, applications can be written once and run on multiple platforms while Electron serves as a universal interface with the operating system. It has its own core set of APIs; Chromium APIs and Node.js built-in modules are included as well.

Electron has been downloaded more than 1.2 million times in the past year and used to build applications ranging from email to SQL analytics tools and the Slack communications platform. Recently, JavaScript founder Brendan Eich cited Electron as a tool his new company, browser maker Brave Software, has used in building its technology.

Version 1.0 is available at The 1.0 release is accompanied by an app to help users explore the framework's APIs. The Electron API Demos app has code snippets for getting started along with tips on using the APIs. Electron developers also added an open source extension to Chrome Developer Tools called Devtron, to help debug and troubleshoot apps.

Alongside Electron 1.0, GitHub is releasing an update to Spectron, an integration testing framework for Electron apps. Spectron 3.0 supports the entire Electron API so that developers can more quickly write tests to verify an application's behavior in various scenarios and environments.

IDG Insider


« 8 awesome (and sometimes free) conference call services


50% off Spigen Tough Armor Volt iPhone 6s case with Wireless Charge Receiver - Deal Alert »
IDG News Service

The IDG News Service is the world's leading daily source of global IT news, commentary and editorial resources. The News Service distributes content to IDG's more than 300 IT publications in more than 60 countries.

  • Mail

Recommended for You

Trump hits partial pause on Huawei ban, but 5G concerns persist

Phil Muncaster reports on China and beyond

FinancialForce profits from PSA investment

Martin Veitch's inside track on today’s tech trends

Future-proofing the Middle East

Keri Allan looks at the latest trends and technologies


Do you think your smartphone is making you a workaholic?